NYU’s Daily Student Newspaper
washington square news Vol. 40, No. 13
Monday, february 13, 2012
Cuomo approval ratings rise
Starlight, Silver host Valentine’s Day Party
By Kristine Itliong
By Emily Yang
New York state may welcome a new year under Governor Cuomo. According to a recent poll of New York state by Marist Poll, a majority of registered voters say they believe the state is going in the right direction this year. “One of the key findings of this poll was that for the first time in more than a decade, registered voters are a little bit more optimistic,” said Mary Azzoli, a representative from Marist who also worked on the study. The study, which surveyed 681 New York state adults by telephone in proportion to each county’s population, found that 52 percent voted in favor of the state’s direction. This is a significant increase in comparison to the 18 percent of voters who felt the same way in Oct. 2010. Much of this approval has been attributed to New York’s
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Children with chronic illnesses and their families gathered in Kimmel Center yesterday afternoon to celebrate Valentine’s Day with students from the Silver School of Social work.
Tisch grad captures economic trials of Bangladeshi women By Brittany VanBibber Holly Mosher sat down to read her daily dose of news in 2006 and encountered what became her inspiration for a documentary — a project that would introduce her to countless obstacles and lifelong friendships. Mosher, who received a Bachelor of Fine Arts from the Tisch School of the Arts in 1994, first heard about Mohammad Yunus when he received the Nobel Peace Prize for his work in Bangladesh involving microlending and social business. Her latest documentary film, “Bonsai People: The Vision of Muhammad Yunus,” premiered this weekend at Quad Cinema
in Greenwich Village. The film follows the lives of Bangladeshi women who received loans from one of Yunus’s Grameen Banks. Yunus’s first loan of $27 was made out to 42 women. Now, his loans have reached over 6.5 million women. This led to a global initiative to fight poverty with social business and microlending. Since 2006, Yunus has opened multiple Grameen Banks throughout Bangladesh. A career in documentary filmmaking was not always a definite for Mosher. Only after a high school guidance counselor gave her a personality quiz did she decide to apply to Tisch. “I didn’t even realize film was a career,” Mosher said.
Following a stint unhappily producing commercials, she made a decision. “I was either going to change careers or I promised myself that I would do something that
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NYU wrestling wins fifth UAA title By Cole Riley
Grameen Banks loans have reached 6.5 million women.
With Starlight Children’s Foundation, the Undergraduate Student Government Association at the NYU Silver School of Social Work hosted a Valentine’s Day party yesterday. Children with chronic illnesses and their families gathered to enjoy live entertainment, food and arts and crafts. Lauren Berninger, program manager of Starlight Children’s Foundation, said the association and USGA have been annually organizing this event together for four years. Starlight, a non-profit organization that helps seriously ill children and families address social and emotional aspects of illness, provides sporting events, amusement park outings and trips to the zoo. The Valentine’s Day party
The NYU wrestling squad captured their fifth University Athletic Association Championship title in school history as they beat both the University of Chicago and Case Western Reserve University in Cleveland on Saturday. All five of NYU’s UAA titles (’99, ’00, ’06, ’08 and ’12) were won under current head coach Bruce Haberli. The Violet grapplers fought a tough battle against the University of Chicago Maroons in the first of the day’s two matches. After falling 6-0 in the first two bouts, freshman Matt DiGiovanni swung momentum NYU’s way with a gritty 7-6 victory in the 141-pound division.
“Matt had a close match against Chicago,” assistant coach Cory Luce said. “He gutted it out and wrestled tough for every minute of that match.” Following DiGiovanni’s win, the Violets won four of the next six divisions. Juniors Dan Gorman (149-pound) and Jake Pawlowski (184-pound) and seniors David Rice (165-pound) and Greg Martino (174-pound) defeated their respective opponents. With a crushing defeat in the 197-pound division to Chicago’s Mario Palmisano, the match came down to the last bout. In a risky decision made by the coaching staff, senior Jamie Myers was inserted into the heavyweight
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Washington Square news | monday, february 13, 2012
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Tropes of Blindness in the Work of Albert Memmi
Westminster Kennel Club Dog Show
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Come to the 136th annual show at MSG, featuring two days of dogs competing to be “Best in Show.”
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ON THE WIRE
Pizza Hut Proposal Thanks to a local Pizza Hut, marriage hopefuls in Plano, Texas have a unique opportunity this Valentine’s Day. The restaurant is offering a $10,010 engagement package, which includes a red ruby ring, limo service, flowers, a fireworks show, a photographer and a videographer. The extra $10 is for an evening meal of a medium one-topping rectangular pan pizza, five breadsticks with marinara sauce and 10 cinnamon sticks with a cup of icing. The corporation is only offering this package to the first ten requests. In the 24 hours after the announcement last week, Pizza Hut received 800 serious inquiries. — The Huffington Post
History and literature boasts highest satisfaction rating — The Harvard Crimson
A woman poses for a sketch artist who promises a finished portrait in seven minutes.
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jaywon choe kelsey desiderio russell steinberg KIRSTEN CHANG francis poon terka cicelOVa About WSN: Washington Square News (ISSN 15499389) is the student newspaper of New York University. WSN is published Monday through Thursday during NYU’s academic year, except for university holidays, vacations and exam periods. Corrections: WSN is committed to accurate reporting. When we make errors, we do our best to correct them as quickly as possible. If you believe we have erred, contact managing editor Jaewon Kang at email@example.com or at 212.998.4302.
nyunews.com | monday, february 13, 2012 | Washington Square news
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Poll ratings rise for Cuomo
year-old governor, Andrew Cuomo, as these numbers started increasing considerably since he was sworn in last January. According to the Marist Poll, three in four registered voters in New York, 76 percent, think Cuomo is a good leader. CAS professor Steven Brams, who teaches politics with a focus on social choice theory, agreed with this notion. “[In politics] we would call this the honeymoon period, when a new person is elected, and he seems to be quite effective and therefore receives a high approval rating,” Brams said. “People see a little more hope on the horizon. I would tend to agree.” In regard to Cuomo’s ideology, almost 6 in 10 voters consider Cuomo a moderate though he is a registered Democrat. “He’s brought the two parties to a consensus, unlike what’s happening in Washington,” Brams said. While politicians are often called out for not keeping promises made during their campaign, 65 percent of voters felt Cuomo has kept his. “Cuomo’s been able to accomplish most of his agenda that he set out in his
election campaign during his first year in office,” said LSP freshman and New York state resident Alexander Hasapidis. “He has everything under control, [and] things have turned around pretty quickly since he came into office.” But Cuomo’s most cited success has been how he has handled the state’s budget. New York state resident Alton Wilson, 38, said Cuomo has been great handling the economy well. “He hasn’t cut as many social programs as other governors have in the past,” he said. Cuomo has also proposed to link tougher standards for evaluating teachers, increase monitoring of future public employees’ pensions and raise the retirement age from 62 to 65. “From [a] New York citizens’ perspective, there has been economic development — an important indicator that the government is doing something right,” New York state resident Xavier Chavez, 56, said. Kristine Itliong is a deputy city/state editor. Email her at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Silver, Starlight brighten Valentine’s Day is a part of Starlight’s Great Escapes program, which aims to provide recreational opportunities throughout the year to bring families together. About 100 people from around New York state attended the event, said Ann Perepezko, programming chair of the USGA and a senior at Silver. “It’s really great to see the looks on the kids’ faces when they’re having so much fun,” Perepezko said. “The families are all together, and it’s a time when they can have fun and do arts and crafts and everything and be with people they can play with. It’s a really nice environment.” NYU and Starlight host a similar program in the fall when they plan a Halloween party in Coles Sports Center
with games and crafts. “The Great Escapes program ... brings families together who are in similar situations, so it’s a way for them to network and be supportive,” Berninger said. “I’ve found that they almost all become friends and after a while, they establish networks with each other that help them feel less isolated.” Liz Fritz, a Silver senior and a student government officer, said the event was relaxing to participants. At the party, Fritz volunteered to help children and their parents with arts and crafts. “It’s really laid back, and [families] do things they might not usually do,” Fritz said. “It’s just a nice break and it’s fun.” Melissa Crespo, a Bronx
resident, came to the party with her 14-year-old son, Marc-Anthony. MarcAnthony has ShprintzenGoldberg craniosynostosis syndrome, a rare genetic disorder affecting connective tissues which causes craniofacial and skeletal abnormalities. Crespo said she enjoys these events because they are perfect for her son, who has auditory problems and is non-verbal. “I like that it’s low-key, and does not have so much stimulation,” Crespo said. “I like it — it’s not too bright, not too loud, there are not too many colors and not too many smells.” Emily Yang is city/state editor. Email her at email@example.com.
Dog parade protests NYU expansion LSP presents Islamic and Byzantine Art By Rita Solomon
Dog owners and their cape-clad canines gathered at the Mercer Houston Dog Run on Saturday to protest against NYU’s 2031 expansion plan. The resident-organized rally was held at Judson Memorial Church from 12:00 to 2:00 p.m. Dog owners and residents said during the construction of NYU 2031’s new superblocks, the dog run would be moved west. The proposal would expose the dogs to construction dust until the buildings are completed. “The expansion plan will affect the playground where we take our children, the dog park
where we take our dogs, our supermarket, gym, our park, our light,” Greenwich Village resident Anna Marti said. “If this proposal passes, a lot of residents will move away. The community feel, the vibe will go away.” Speakers at the Pawrade included New York state assembly woman Deborah Glick and state senator Thomas Duane. “We are a neighborhood, a community, and we’d like to stay that way,” Glick said. “We are going to marshal a village army to protect our future generations.” Brad Hoylman, chair of Community Board No. 2, also spoke to the chanting crowd gathered inside the church.
Dog owners and residents protested plans that would expose dogs to dust over the next four years.
“About 35 years ago, a woman stood not far from here, fighting a similar thing,” he said. “She was told they were too powerful, but she won. That is what we should do. We should fight like [activist Jane Jacobs] did, and we will win.” But residents with their dogs were not the only attendees. Members of the NYU community were present as well in the protests. “A lot of faculty are quietly worried that NYU is going to overreach its budget, reducing its overall quality as an institution,” said Mark Crispin Miller, Steinhardt professor of Media, Culture and Communication. “This will drive away top faculty, inflate tuition and destroy the school. We’re going to save NYU the community from NYU the corporation.” Lawrence B. Goldberg, president of Friends of LaGuardia Place, said he used to take his daughter to the dog run when she was little. “This community’s open space gave us the calm, the peace to be a neighborhood,” he said. “We have an obligation to protect this light, air and space for future generations. We need other little girls looking at the sky and saying ‘light.’” Village resident and NYU alumna Sandra Goldberg expressed her dissatisfaction with the changes NYU has made since she attended the university. “Today, the dorms cost too much, and there are fewer scholarships for students as a result of expansion. I live a few blocks from here,” she said. “This is my neighborhood. As an alum, I don’t contribute to NYU because it’s like paying Wall Street.” Rita Solomon is a staff writer. Email her at firstname.lastname@example.org.
By Jordan Melendrez Islamic and Byzantine art attracted NYU students and faculty last Friday night to the Kimmel Center of University Life. As the first of a three-part Liberal Studies Art History lecture series, the lecture Byzantium and Islam: Art in Translation featured Mary C. Evans, a curator from the Metropolitan Museum of Art. Provided to the university on a grant from the Lehman Foundation and the Liberal Studies Program, the event will present art experts who will discuss their research, specialization or exhibitions. Evans previewed the museum exhibit on Byzantine art, which is expected to open on March 14. She displayed a slideshow and spoke of the bowl with inhabited vine scrolls of 700 C.E. to Qur’ans and gospels in the Mosques with woodcarvings in 900 C.E. “What we hope you will see as you go through the exhibition, and through the catalog, is that many of the ideas and motifs, both intellectual and decorative, that are in the region in 600 [C.E.] are, in varying ways, made use of the new polity to define their visual voice both in a secular world and, to a lesser extent, in a religious world,” Evans said. Joseph Portanova, an LSP professor and an organizer of the series, said he hopes to provide an opportunity for students and faculty to inter-
change ideas at lectures. “Our other goal is to raise awareness of the connections and interrelations between areas of the globe, as well as of art forms and styles of particular regions and cultures,” he said. LSP freshman Julia Musto said she thinks the lecture was illuminating. “I studied AP Art history in high school and I actually learned a little bit about Byzantium art and the Hagia Sophia, so it was wonderful to bring that up again,” Musto said. Portanova said he was very pleased to see many members of the NYU community attend the event. “We hope this talk raised awareness concerning the survival, interaction and developments of artistic styles and contacts in the Byzantine borderlands of Syria and Egypt before and after the Muslim conquest,” Portanova said. “And most importantly, how political change did not involve the immediate and complete replacement of one population and culture by another.” The second part of the series, Maya Painting Minor and Major: Murals, Vessels and World Comparisons, will be presented by dean of Yale College Mary Miller Feb. 17 at 10 a.m. in the auditorium at 19 University Pl. Jordan Melendrez is a contributing writer. Email her at email@example.com.
Washington Square news | monday, february 13, 2012 | nyunews.com
First half woes haunt Violets
By Laura Buccieri
With losses to Emory University and the University of Rochester on the road this weekend, the NYU women’s basketball team dropped to a 10-12 overall record and a 2-9 conference record. The Violets lost 82-73 in overtime to the Emory Eagles in Atlanta on Friday. While NYU trailed the Eagles 36-20 at the half, the Violets got hot in the second half, hitting 22 of their 35 shots (62.9 percent), including 5-7 from three-point territory. Senior guard Bianca Storts led the way with 24 points — 20 of
which came in the second half. The Violets outscored the Eagles 46-30 to force overtime. “The second half of tonight’s game was the best half of basketball we played all season,” head coach Stefano Trompeo said. “If we play close to that way for the remainder of the season, we will be tough to play.” Unfortunately, a lackluster overtime quarter killed any chance of escaping Atlanta with a road win. Junior center Makenzie Hirz contributed to the comeback effort with 12 boards. Senior co-captain Cara Bonito pitched in 15 points as well.
File photo by David Lin
Junior Makenzie Hirz contributed to the comeback effort.
Men’s volleyball sweeps crossover By Sara Levy The No. 7 NYU men’s volleyball swept their competition at the United Volleyball Conference Crossover on Saturday and Sunday in Hoboken, N.J. The Violets defeated Medaille College, the first of three opponents NYU faced over the weekend, in three sets (26-24, 25-23, 25-20). Sophomore Connor Mortland had 30 assists and seven digs as the Violets’ setter. Senior libero Jay Hayes notched seven digs, and sophomore middle blocker Nick Capriccio and freshman opposite and setter Matthew MacDonald had nine kills each. Yesterday, the Violets competed against defending Division III Champion, No. 6 Nazareth College. In five sets, the Violets pulled out a much-needed victory (25-20, 21-25, 25-20, 20-25, 15-13). “The game against Nazareth was a big win,” head coach Jose Pina said. “It was a very important match because we are two of the teams able to win the UVC.” Mortland dominated again with 54 assists and 12 digs, both season highs, and junior outside
hitter Taylor Fauntleroy recorded 17 kills as the Violets pulled out the nail-biter. Senior opposite and middle blocker Luke Hamlet led the team with six total blocks and nine kills. Senior captain Pat Dodd tallied 16 kills and 12 digs. “Dodd had an excellent, excellent match,” Pina said. Later in the day, NYU faced off against Hilbert College, looking to sweep the UVC. In three dominant sets, the Violets cruised to victory (25-11, 25-18, 25-19). Pina was able to give every member of the squad some playing time. Junior setter Karl Johnson recorded a career-high of 33 assists, and Hamlet led the way with 10 kills as NYU improved to 4-0 in UVC play on the season. “We did well, and performed when we needed to,” Pina said. “Overall, it was a very good weekend for us and it was a good gauge for where we are in our new conference.” The Violets’ next match is Wednesday, Feb. 15, at 7:00 p.m. against Bard College in Annadaleon-Hudson, NY. Sara Levy is a staff writer. Email her at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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On Sunday, the Violets played the University of Rochester on the road, falling 64-50. In their second University Athletic Association match of the weekend, the Violets once again had a slow start and entered halftime trailing by 12 points. In another second-half shooting spree, NYU fought back, but the early deficit was too much of a battle. “Falling behind to a quality opponent is extremely hard to overcome,” Trompeo said. “We tried hard but not enough shots fell today.” Even though NYU took more shots from the field than Rochester (60 to 56), the Yellowjackets notched an impressive 48.2 shooting percentage from the field, compared to NYU’s dismal 31.7 percent. “We played them even in the second half but came out flat and could never recover the lead,” said Bonito, who notched eight points in 37 minutes of play. “They are a good team, and we played them well.” Sophomore forward Alexis Doherty was a standout in the game, grabbing 10 points in just 11 minutes of play. Senior Shelby Coon also recorded 10 points. NYU will host the University of Chicago on Friday, Feb. 17 at Coles Sports Center. Laura Buccieri is a staff writer. Email her at email@example.com.
Wrestling wins UAA championship match despite missing practice last week because of injuries. Myers went on to beat Chicago’s Jeff Tyburski 5-4 and claimed the match a victory for NYU. “I felt we had the best chance of beating Chicago by bumping Jamie up to heavyweight,” Luce said. “We gambled a little and came out on top.” With the title in sight, NYU finished off their second opponent, host Case Western Reserve University, 43-7. David Rice recorded his second victory of the day and was named UAA’s Most Outstanding Wrestler. “Rice wrestled two tough opponents and was relentless in his attacks,” Luce said. “I think he’s peaking at the right time, and we’re excited to see what he does in the postseason.” Gorman and Martino recorded pins in the 149-pound and 174-pound divisions, respectively, while Myers notched another victory. All three of them earned UAA All-Association honors in their respective
File photo by David Lin
Senior Jamie Myers weight classes. “We know the most important weeks are upon us, and there’s a lot more work to be done,” Luce said. “We’re taking this momentum into Scranton next week.” NYU will travel to Scranton, Pa., to face Centennial Conference opponent Johns Hopkins University, as well as the University of Scranton on Saturday, Feb. 18. Cole Riley is a deputy sports editor. Email him at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Success for Evans in return from injury By Sara Levy
NYU’s men’s and women’s track and field teams traveled to Massachusetts to compete in the Boston University Valentine Invitational this past weekend. In her return from injury, senior captain Maeve Evans performed the team’s strongest of the day with a time of 5:06.31 in the one mile, a season-best. Junior Georgina Norton also notched a finish time of 3:01.10 in the 1,000-meter race, marking a personal record. “I went out a little hard, but was slightly faster than last week,” Norton said. Seniors Laura Santoski and Paige Zelinsky participated in the 5K-race, logging times of 18:11.12 and 17:41.12, respectively. “I felt good for the first half of the race and was a little too aggressive,” Santoski said. “I couldn’t close as well as I had hoped, and my time was slower than I wanted.” In the 800-meter run, freshman Alyssa Binczyk finished with a time of 2:20.13. She also joined Norton in the distance medley. “I love running relays because track usually is such an individualistic sport,” Binczyk said. “A relay gives you the opportunity to have more of a team feel.”
“It was a mixed day, but there were a lot of good performances” head coach Nick McDonough said. “The women’s squad had a bunch of solid performances.” For the men’s team, freshman Jon Simon (22.71) and sophomore Gilson Cortes (22.72) finished with back-to-back times in the 200-meter dash. Cortes, juniors James Patterson and Daniel McKinney and freshman Dharen Kadiyala joined together for the 4x400-meter relay. The quartet finished with an impressive time of 3:24.21. “[McDonough] told us before the race that he wanted us to run the relay in 3:25,” Cortes said. “We were all determined to do so and ended running even faster with a 3:24.” Patterson competed in the 800-meter run and finished with a time of 1:53.71. Patterson is now first among University Athletic Association runners. McKinney, who had a 49.67 finishing time in the 400-meter dash, is also first in the conference. “We need to keep working and training hard, being consistent and progressing as the season goes on,” McDonough said. “Getting some experience is the biggest thing, and getting in better shape.” Both the men’s and women’s
teams will be competing Feb. 18 in the NYU Division III Challenge at the New Balance Track and Field Center in Manhattan. Sara Levy is a staff writer. Email her at email@example.com.
File photo by David Lin
Senior Maeve Evans
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Men’s basketball drops second straight UAA matchup By John Axelrod
File photo by Rachel Kaplan
Senior co-captain Stein’s new record pushed him ahead of Nasmith Hall of Famer Sanders for 15th on NYU’s all-time scoring list.
The NYU men’s basketball squad lost two conference games on the road to Emory University and University of Rochester on Friday and Sunday, respectively. The No. 16 Violets traveled down to Atlanta to face off against the Emerson Eagles on Friday. In a thrilling back-and-forth affair that featured 10 lead changes, NYU lost 73-70. With just two minutes left in the game and trailing 66-62, junior forward Max Wein and senior cocaptain and center Andy Stein hit back-to-back three-pointers to pull ahead two points. Emory turned over their next possession to NYU, forcing the Eagles to intentionally foul junior guard and co-captain Kyle Stockmal. Stockmal hit both foul shouts, giving the Violets a four-point lead with just 37.3 seconds left in the game. However, the Eagles responded with some miraculous plays in the final seconds to claim the victory. Emory junior Alex Greven hit a three-pointer, and then junior forward Michael Friedberg stole the inbounds pass which lead to a go-ahead layup by senior guard Austin
Claunch with 18 seconds left. The Violets then turned the ball over on their next possession and were forced to foul. With only a few seconds remaining, Stockmal had a chance to force overtime with a game-tying three-pointer, but the shot rimmed out. Stein led NYU in scoring against the Eagles with 17 points, 12 of which came in the second half. Stockmal and junior forward Carl Yaffe registered 15 points apiece, while Yaffe added 10 rebounds, five blocks, four assists and three steals to his impressive double-double stat line. Wein chipped in 10 points of his own, too. On Sunday the Violets traveled up to Rochester, N.Y. The team almost pulled off an impressive comeback win against the Rochester Yellowjackets but fell short 62-53. NYU trailed by as much as 18 points in the second half. In an impressive 20-6 scoring run, the Violets brought their deficit to just four points. “We were able to force turnovers, make stops and hit shots that we missed earlier in the game,” head coach Joe Nesci said. The Violets, however, were unable to get the stops they needed
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Vision of Mosher, Yunis mattered, because I gave at least two years of my life to a project,” Mosher said. “So, I had to really care.” While filming “Bonsai People,” Mosher dealt with various obstacles. During the five years she worked on the film, Bangladesh experienced one of its worst cyclones in history, which halted filming on more than one occasion. Mosher also had to learn the language in order to gain the trust of those she interviewed. Mosher partially attributes this adaptability to her experiences at NYU. “I was very grateful that I had freedom and a really in-depth, handson experience,” she said. Mosher also credits her skills as a one-woman crew to NYU’s broad range of classes in sound and camera work. Mosher says her belief in positive social businesses grew as she spent time following the Bangladeshi women. She highlights many people’s inability to see the overlap between non-profit
and business. “Volunteer work and your work can be the same,” she said. Elisa Hertz, Mosher’s classmate who graduated from NYU in 1994, attended the premiere this weekend to show support. “It has a global message of making people aware of circumstances outside of your comfort zone and outside of being in a first world country,” Hertz said. Mosher still plans to stay in touch with the women she met during filming. The most rewarding part of the experience, she said, was going back and seeing the progress these women had made in their own lives. “I hope that [audiences] feel empowered to try to follow their own dreams,” Mosher said. “We all have our own gifts to give back to the world and our own talent, and we often stop ourselves from even trying,” Brittany VanBibber is a staff writer. Email her at email@example.com.
in the final minute of the game to bounce pass the Yellowjackets. “Our overall offensive rhythm was just off today,” Nesci said. “We hit a bump in the road, but we‘ll work on what’s going wrong in practice this week.” Stein and Stockmal were the only NYU players to score in double figures on Sunday with 17 and 10, respectively. Stein has now recorded 1,195 over his tenure at NYU, pushing him ahead of Naismith Hall of Famer Tom “Satch” Sanders for 15th place on the school’s all-time scoring list. Coming into the game, NYU led the nation in three-point shooting, but against Rochester the Violets hit only 7 of their 23 attempts (30.4 percent) behind the arc. Despite these two losses, NYU is 18-4 on the season and 7-4 in the University Athletic Association. They now sit in second place in the UAA and are two games behind first-place Washington University. The Violets will host the University of Chicago on Feb. 17 at 8 p.m. at Coles Sports Center. John Axelrod is a deputy sports editor. Email him at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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Good vibrations at NYU Percussion Weekend By Michelle Lim The Frederick Loewe Theatre shook with drum beats as the percussion studies program at the Steinhardt School of Culture, Education and Human Development hosted a Weekend of Percussion. The Percussive Arts Society and KoSA, an international music collective, helped organize the event where percussionists in the New York area congregated at the theater to showcase their talents last weekend. Saturday was filled with performances by several ensembles including Steinhardt music instructor Michael Eagle and Ian Gibson, who presented an exhibition of Scottish pipe band drumming. There was also an Afro-Caribbean performance and clinic led by Co-Tim-Bo. Additionally, solo marimba competitions were held for two divisions, and the winners performed that night at the Showcase Concert. The judging panel was comprised of renowned artists who also held master classes and performed at the showcase: Among them was Ji Hye Jung, an assistant professor of percussion at the University of Kansas. “I feel really honored that NYU is having me for this great festival,” Jung said. “As a musician, it’s a privilege to be here and playing at this hall. Being in New York, I’ve met so
many musicians who are doing something totally different from me, and yet we are all still percussionists.” The Showcase Concert featured a variety of genres within percussion. Synchronicity, a duet of brothers, introduced their arrangement of Stravinsky on the piano and percussion instruments. Award-wining marimbist Eriko Daimo also had a charming performance. Nacho Arimany and his partner Manu de Lago played a unique instrument called the Hang, producing earthy and natural sounds with flamenco rhythms. NYU’s own percussion ensemble directed by Jonathan Haas was the concert’s grand finale, concluding with an energetic finish that the entire audience enjoyed. Steinhardt senior Aaron Silberstein, a member of the performing NYU percussion ensemble, was excited not only to perform onstage but also to
help set up the weekend’s events. “It really is fantastic to have all these famous people here because we get to interact with them oneon-one,” Silberstein said. “As an NYU student I’m helping out with the logistics of the whole festival and it allows me the time to talk with every artist as well as watch their performances and clinics. It’s like getting two master classes instead of one.” Sunday’s events featured other master classes including one by Duncan Patton, a principal timpanist from the Metropolitan Opera Orchestra, and another by Shawn Pelton, the drummer for Saturday Night Live. The event ended with another Showcase Concert featuring NYU’s steel band and Despers USA. Michelle Lim is a contributing writer. Email her at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The event featured the showcase of an NYU steel drum band.
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New Terahertz NYPD scanners invasive By Ryan Griggs
“They pushed me up against a fence. They went through my pockets in my jacket and pants. One of them took out my wallet, and started going through it. I wasn’t doing anything wrong. I was walking down the street. I have no idea why those cops stopped me,” CAS sophomore George Georgiadis said. The Fourth Amendment says, “The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated...” But this doesn’t stop the New York Police Department. The boys in blue employ a despotic tactic called the stop-and-frisk method wherein if officers have reasonable suspicion that an individual is involved in a crime but not probable cause for arrest, they may temporarily detain such an individual and frisk him or her for weapons. No warrant is required. However, not only are these tactics unconstitutional, they are ineffective. According to figures released by the NYPD last May, “Of the over 180,000 stop-and-frisk encounters reported by the police department, 88 percent of them ended in neither an arrest nor a summons.”
Armed with a stunning track record of unlawful, unsuccessful searches of its victims, the NYPD is pressing forward. A couple of months ago, police commissioner Ray Kelly announced a partnership with the U.S. Department of Defense. The fruit of that partnership is the Terahertz Imaging Detection scanner. The scanner has the ability to detect radiation emitted by individuals in a 16-foot radius as well as any object that may block that radiation. The scanners will be used to detect concealed weapons carried by those walking down any New York City street. Or will they? When the NYPD officers went through George’s wallet, surely they weren’t looking for a gun or a knife. And while these scanners may detect the presence of weapons, they do not and cannot detect the permits for the lawful carrying of those weapons. Should we subject every New Yorker to a TSA-style pat down for not breaking the law? And what of possible anomalies? Remember senator Rand Paul. He was stopped, detained and searched by TSA officials after one of the Department of Defense’s new body scanners produced an error message — a false positive — as the senator passed through a Kentucky security check-
point. If one new-fangled government contraption is so faulty, what’s to say the next one won’t be? Evidence from Cornell University and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology suggests the Terahertz rays that the machines use have a unique ability to unzip double-stranded DNA, causing obvious problems in DNA expression and replication. Not only might the use of these street scanners further diminish the ravaged Fourth Amendment, but they promise to scramble the very genetic makeup of New Yorkers. Of course, the NYPD won’t take to the streets with consent forms, seeking the voluntary approval of the public to be radiated with DNA unraveling Terahertz waves. If they did, the technology would never reach the streets of TriBeCa, Harlem or Chelsea. Morality and health aside, the Terahertz Imaging Detection scanner is one of many slashes at America’s founding document. Sooner rather than later, New Yorkers will get sick of picking up the pieces. Begin with populist Occupy protests, mix in a violent police force and pepper the product in Constitution confetti. Look out. Ryan Griggs is a contributing columnist. Email him at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Army whistleblower deserves Nobel Peace Prize By Chris DiNardo
Last week, an Icelandic parliamentary group nominated Private First Class Bradley Manning for the 2012 Nobel Peace Prize. Manning gained notoriety for his alleged role in leaking thousands of Iraq and Afghanistan war documents and 250,000 State Department diplomatic cables to whistleblower non-profit website WikiLeaks. Currently awaiting a court martial, Manning’s court charges include aiding the enemy, a capital offense. A substantial majority of the public says they hope Manning, if found guilty, rots in a prison cell until the day he dies. Some political commentators have urged for his execution. But if Manning happens to be guilty of these allegations, not only does he deserve commendation from the public at large, but the Nobel Prize as well. If he did what the government has alleged, he is a hero. The courage it took — despite strict military rules against dissemination of secret information — to release information he felt was critical for the American people to know is colossal. And Manning has bravely faced the consequences, however unjust. He has been imprisoned for almost two years in deplorable conditions without charges. The perfunctory watchdog media has defended the government and allowed him to be hung in the court of public opinion, calling him a traitor before he has even had the chance to stand trial. In breaking the law, he exposed the law-breaking of an entire govern-
ment establishment. Not only is this justified, it’s patriotic. The information unveiled by these leaks is momentous. The diplomatic cables got the most attention, mainly because of the embarrassment of what was revealed. The American people learned of an escalating secret drone campaign in Yemen, Pakistan and Somalia. We learned about American hypocrisy as we aided a Pakistani military fueling the Taliban’s insurgency in Afghanistan. We learned of American support for illegitimate despots throughout the region. Newfound knowledge in the international community about corruption by these despots helped spark the Arab Spring, especially in Tunisia, Egypt, Bahrain and Libya. So which promoted more democracy? Manning’s leaks or Operation Iraqi Freedom? Both the Afghanistan documents and Iraq War logs showed us how bleak the outlook is for American troops in the region, even after a decade of fighting. They taught us how military officials had lied about rising sectarian violence in Iraq, which led to the surge in troops and deaths. Those military officials also turned a blind eye to reports of rape, torture and murder by Iraqi soldiers. Most importantly, the documents detailed the actual amount of innocent civilians killed since the war’s inception — an average of 31 civilian deaths per day in Iraq, thousands less than the U.S. previously reported. This slaughter of civilians is one of the chief sources of terrorism against America by the Muslim world.
Nobel Peace Prize laureate Barack Obama has been initiating and overseeing this offensive foreign policy. But members of his cabinet have declared that Manning is the one with blood on his hands. Isn’t that the pot calling the kettle black? As president, Obama has publicly lauded transparency, stating, “Openness will strengthen our democracy.” In actuality, his administration has engaged in an unprecedented war on whistleblowers, pursuing more Espionage Act prosecutions than all other administrations combined. These attacks on transparency would then lead to the continuation of systemic and profitable abuse and fraud in our military, financial and political sectors. Obama’s statement is correct. Having the government operate in secret does subvert our democracy as it disables us from adequately judging it on the proper merits. If we knew more about what government officials were doing behind a veil of secrecy, term limits would be unnecessary and the perpetrators would simply be voted out of office. By bringing to light abuses that the American people have a right to know about, Manning is a hero. Whistleblowers like him are to be lauded, not damned; protected rather than hunted. We should give the man a medal to hang around his neck. Not a noose. Chris DiNardo is a columnist. Email him at email@example.com.
Cuomo’s popularity shrinks in context
Less than two years ago, only 18 percent of New Yorkers thought the state was headed in the right direction. Now, 52 percent of those surveyed approve of the direction the state is headed. This approval rating, while unseen in over a decade, is not necessarily the result of a job well done. Governor Andrew Cuomo, who has a favorable reputation among 76 percent of voters, has shown hints of decisiveness by fulfilling his campaign promises. He has been effective in balancing the budget, restructuring the tax code and legalizing same-sex marriage in the state. In light of Congress’ lackluster approval rating and inability to handle key economic issues, Cuomo’s performance is especially impressive. New Yorkers, a group not typically known for their optimism, are hopeful for the state’s future. But Cuomo’s popularity may be more a result of the context in which he came to power than any exceptional legislation he has supported. Disgraced former governor Eliot Spitzer provided more benefits to tabloids than to voters. His replacement, David Paterson, never provided a comforting presence to New Yorkers. The recent memory of Weinergate and the resulting humiliation brought upon the state remains fresh in the minds of New Yorkers. In contrast, Cuomo has drawn positive press nationwide. Such enthusiasm should be tempered with the acknowledgment that Cuomo is still in what CAS politics professor Steven Brams terms the honeymoon period. While Cuomo has not had the opportunity to succeed in many exceptional ways, his short time in office has not provided the opportunity to sabotage his political career either. Let us not confuse competence with excellence. Cuomo is representative of what government should be. Nothing less and nothing more. Email the WSN Editorial Board at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Editorial Board: Olivia Gonzalez (Chair), Atticus Brigham (Co-Chair), Chris DiNardo, Emily Franklin, Sanchay Jain, Matt Kao, Ben Miller and Peter Murphy.
Washington Square news | monday, february 13, 2012 | nyunews.com
features Valentine’s day ventures By Maximilíano Durón
If you have a valentine: Valentine’s Day is right around the corner. Before your plans are set in stone for the big night, here are some tips to spend a perfect night of romance with your valentine.
1. Sunset walk Take a walk through the West Village down Christopher Street toward West Avenue with that special someone. The walk is relaxing, quiet and enjoyable, especially while holding hands with your valentine. This path takes you a block south of the Hudson River Park. Stay to watch the sunset over the water — a romantic way to start the evening. 2. An off-the-beaten-track restaurant Instead of going to a busy restaurant, offering a sweet deal for Valentine’s Day and requiring a reservation months in advance, go to a unique restaurant in the city offering good food and a special atmosphere. As restaurants with special deals may be crowded and noisy with slow service, try something adventurous like Ippudo in the East Village. 3. Bake together If you don’t feel like braving the cold weather on Feb. 14, stay in and make a meal together. Follow that meal with a delectable dessert. Try baking cookies from scratch. Starting a playful fight with the flour is also a cute way to flirt. 4. Watch the stars While the night sky in the woods can be one of the most beautiful things to see, spotting the stars in the city might be one of the most difficult things to do. Instead, go to the Hayden Planetarium in Central Park and watch a show before dinner. Try going around 5 p.m. At $19, stargazing can be a fun alternative to the traditional Valentine’s Day events. 5. Live music Go to a club or coffee house and listen to good live music. An indie music vibe will put you in a mood that will let you concentrate on your date and enjoy the night. Listening to jazz music is romantic and casual, which can make the date all the more special.
If you don’t: Valentine’s Day is no longer just for lovers. It may be one of the most romantic days of the year, but you don’t need to be in a couple to have fun.
1. Dance This may sound overrated, but it really is the best way to forget about a past relationship or your relationship status. Go out with a few close friends and dress up, spend the entire night dancing, neglect any negativity and make a night out of it. 2. Cleanse Have a relationship cleanse with friends. Throw away things from past relationships that cause clutter. Try to do it safely, without burning them. It can be a fun way to remove any lingering attachments to your previous partner. If it worked for the girls on “Friends,” it should work for you, too. 3. Fashion Week As New York Fashion Week rages on, try to be around some of the country’s best designers by taking the subway up to Lincoln Center. While shows are invite only, the atmosphere is still amazing. Spot some celebrity fashionistas and observe what’s new in fashion to help plan your fall wardrobe and make your spring clothes exciting. A new look may help snag a date for next year. 4. Slumber party Make it a fun friends’ night by hanging out in your pajamas. Play a game like Taboo is entertaining and even a little silly. Share your darkest secrets and indulge in yummy treats. Experience the presence of the people you know best and who care about you. 5. Movie night With the Academy Awards at the end of February, catch up on these nominated movies. Make popcorn and watch a top film like “The Tree of Life” or “The Artist.” Be productive this Valentine’s Day by being informed about the nominees for Hollywood’s biggest night. This is also a great way to get the edge on an Oscars pool. all photos via Flickr
Maximilíano Durón is a staff writer. Email him at email@example.com.
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Washington Square News February 13, 2012